Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

February 17, 2017

Switzerland amends constitutional provisions on citizenship. On Sunday, Swiss voters approved a constitutional amendment that provides a path to citizenship for third-generation immigrants, dealing a sound defeat to right-wing opponents who used anti-Islamic rhetoric to suggest that the amendment would compromise national security. The measure establishes several requirements for naturalization, including that applicants must be under 25, have been born in Switzerland, speak a national language, and be independent of state aid.
Russian court orders review of jailed protester’s case. The Constitutional Court of Russia ruled last week that the case of Ildar Dadin, an activist who was convicted under Article 212.1 of Russia’s criminal code, must be reviewed. The court found that the code, which severely punishes people who break Russia’s protest rules, can only be applied when a protester causes an actual risk to public safety; the case will now be reviewed by the Supreme Court.
Taiwanese court to consider constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans. After historically declining to wade into its country’s same-sex marriage debate, the Taiwanese Constitutional Court has placed a landmark case on its docket for March 24. One of the litigants is Chi Chia-wei, who has advocated for same-sex marriage in Taiwan for decades and was imprisoned in the 1980s for his homosexuality.
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